Exclusive : Mcbride’s Back! Advising the BBC!

Damian McPoisonDamian McBride is back giving advice, and this time it is to the BBC.  According to Guido’s co-conspirator in White City he is speaking  (off-the-record terms) on the 5th floor at the White City HQ about now to an invited audience of BBC luvvies and executives on a discussion panel with Nick Robinson.

Guido has not been able to confirm from the BBC press office if, or how much he is being paid.

Surely the BBC hardly needs advice on doing Downing Street’s dirty work…

UPDATE : The BBC’s press office has just emailed:

It’s important for people to have the space to take stock, keep up with new developments and ensure we are providing the best possible service for our audience. The event allows staff across the whole of the division to come together to debate and discuss industry and editorial developments – including hearing from outside perspectives.

They also say Damian ain’t getting paid.

Exclusive : Labour Faked Cameron “Airbrushing”


In response to the last story Guido got a tip-off from Liam Murray to compare the original Tory poster with the Labour attack poster. The before and after comparison is clear: before on the original poster Dave is wearing heavy make-up but you can still see stubble, lines and skin pores, after Labour have manipulated the picture it looks as if he has been very clumsily airbushed.  Deliberate manipulation to make the slogan work…

Labour Go Negative

Labour’s campaign seems so devoid of original ideas that they have taken to stealing internet memes again. As Brown lectures us about Cameron’s use of image over policy, his party machine has officially commandeered a grassroots geek campaign that was doing the rounds. Just as with the #welovethenhs hashtag that dominated fifteen minutes of silly season, Victoria Street have seen something successful and decided to jump on the bandwagon.

Clifford Singer, an eccentric figure with a history of quixotic attacks from the left, seems to have got lucky this time with his MyDavidCameron.com attack site. The campaign gained traction across Twitter and blogs.  Amusingly Labour’s “Twitter Tsar” Kerry McCarthy, who made such a big deal about negative campaigning when the #KerryOut campaign was directed at her, quickly changed her tune when it was Dave being attacked.

Labour have now lifted Singer’s “Is What You See What You’d Get?” on to their website, officially endorsing the negative campaign and revealing just how personally they are going to go after Cameron, just as the Tories are going to make this about Brown.  Guido thinks it’s going to be fun…

A bit of (free) advice to Sue Macmillan and Labour’s digital team; campaigns that only run on little visited websites don’t really work.*  The official Labour Party site is  usually visited only by the party faithful.  You have to push your message out.  Look at what the Tories are doing, they are paying to advertise their Cameron videos on YouTube, reaching out to people who are not already signed up supporters. There are no votes to be gained from repeating your message to faithful party supporters on the official website or the party affiliated sites like LabourList and LabourHome.

*Dizzy points out just how little visited Labour’s online assets are by comparing the online engagement results for the Ed Miliband championed ‘LabourSpace’ which has garnered 9 votes for its latest round of consultations at the same time as the Tories draft Health Manifesto’s got 40,200 votes from 2,612 people.

Even the Iraqis are Laughing at Labour

Sex-text pest and FCO Minister Ivan Lewis has been slapped down by Iraq’s Ahrar Party leader Ayad Jamal Aldin after wading into Baghdad politics. In a move straight out of the New Labour playbook, Lewis used a piece in the Arab newspaper The Daily Star to urge Iraqi voters to judge their politicians on “better public services, fixed roads and transport systems and providing new jobs”, while ignoring the rank corruption that is crippling the country.  Sound familiar?

Fearless transparency campaigner Aldin, who has survived six assassination attempts, hit back hard though:

“Ivan Lewis MP misses the point with the Iraqi people’s political dissatisfaction. Corruption within the government must be the major issue on which the forthcoming election is fought. It is the corruption that prevents these services from being implemented as the money to fund them is siphoned off by Maliki’s government ministers. We will not stand for this anymore and promise tackle corruption head on so that all Iraqis can benefit from a fair and transparent administration which will benefit all the people of Iraq.”

Guido’s man in the Green Zone got in touch to put the boot in “It’s no surprise a UK Labour politician wants to ignore corruption, their spin won’t work here.” It’s a new low when even Iraqis are lecturing Labour about corruption.

PMQs Live Chat : It Was This Time Last Week Edition

Brown’s Biographer Thinks He’s Finished on Election Day

Dr Anthony Seldon has written measured biographies of John Major and Tony Blair. his biography of Brown will be published in the autumn. That he intends to end the story on election day is revealing isn’t it?  Seldon clearly thinks Brown’s political career is finished.

Balls : It Wasn’t Me

Ed Balls may be an unpleasant bully, but he is no fool.  He knows Labour is going to lose the election and he knows he will be blamed almost as much as Brown, for he is Gordon’s homunculus.  The politics of reckless dividing lines, big government over-spending, the vicious briefing against internal party enemies, his personal use of “Mr” McBride to poison politics and his low, lying Machiavellian ways are not going to be faulted for Labour’s defeat if he can help it.  If they are, his ambitions will be thwarted. In private he and his few allies are blaming the prospect of defeat on Hoon and Hewitt’s recent divisiveness.


Labour’s defeat will, he and other loyalists claim implausibly, be nothing to do with the years of kamikaze politics from Balls and Brown…

News Streams Will Kill the News Cycle

Guido gave a talk at Microsoft’s groovy London HQ to the Online News Association’s UK chapter. We did the usual bit of blogger v journalist banter, laughed at Nick Robinson’s ‘Michael Fish moment‘ and then Guido tried to push his new meme.

Having spent a few years writing the advance obituary for the “Dead Tree Press” as well as pushing the digital disintermediation meme, the new, new thing for the start of this decade is the idea that the “news stream” has killed the “news cycle”. Guido recognises that this might sound a bit like a Steve Hilton strategy memo.

Sorry the above slides are more of an aide memoire than a presentation.  The last slide contains the logos of a few “news brands” which are more profitable in aggregate than the whole of what was once called “Fleet Street”. The British newspaper industry is  for the most part a form of vanity publishing, not a business.

UPDATE : Just noticed there was live real-time reportage of the event : live blog and Twitter stream.

Product Placement New Low for Bad Al

Campbell has denied to the Iraq Inquiry sexing up the dodgy dossier, cue much tittering in the press room. His denials were as patchy and hole-ridden as the original intelligence. Haven’t we been over this already?

Campbell is  older, calmer, […]

+ READ MORE +

Tory Backbenchers Cut a Deal

Hearing backroom speculation last week when former Shadow Cabinet member Peter Ainsworth announced his resignation from the green benches. A pre-emptive scandal stopper? Or was did he realise just realise his face didn’t fit and he might as well go […]

+ READ MORE +

Freedom is Indivisible

Anyone else see the irony in the same politicians who support the banning of Islam4UK supporting the Green Revolutionaries in Tehran?  If they support Democracy4Iran, why not at home? As far as Guido knows Islam4UK have no members who have […]

+ READ MORE +

First Blog Scalp of the 2010 Election

In the coming elections Guido has his eye on a few scalps, so he is a little surprised to see that this blog’s first casualty of the 2010 election cycle is Greg Stone, a LibDem councillor standing for parliament in […]

+ READ MORE +



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Liam Fox shreds Cameron’s Calais scaremongering:

“Sad and disappointed to see our Prime Minister stoop to this level of scaremongering, especially as he knows the Calais agreement is nothing to do with the EU and agreed between the two govts”

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